In this book, Francis expands and redefines the approach to the problematic of a comprehensive framework for the study of political elites through an interrogation of political elite formation in the African context of the Provincial Legislature of KwaZulu-Natal. The result is an empirically rich and detailed study of the realization, accumulation and exercise of institutionalized political power. Political elite agency shapes, enables and undermines political institutions and is dependent on a multiplicity of currencies including social and political capital and patterns of culture, respect and institutional capacity. Studies of political elites must w consider t whether elite values, attitudes and patterns of political etiquette penetrate political institutions, but rather how they do so.
Suzanne Francis, PhD. (2009) in Political Science, is a Senior Lecturer in the School of Politics at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. She carries out extensive empirical research, writes and publishes in the area of political elites, value systems and institutions in Africa.